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Wednesday, July 11, 2018

A Challenge With Prizes!

In 2013, 5 years ago, amazing!, I took on a challenge. I had auditioned for a contest that Sew News sponsored for their Sew It All television show. The finalist had to go to the Puyallup Sewing Expo for the audition. While I was there, I was introduced to the Mary Bridge Children's Hospital and the drive that they had for pillowcases. Each child who is admitted receives a pillowcase. Maybe they should really be called comfort cases :)

As I flew home from the expo, I thought about the cases and how many I felt I could do. The number that came to mind was 900. Now, I knew that I couldn't do 900 on my own, so I decided to put it out to all who drop by the blog. The response was amazing, 1000 pillowcases were donated to the project!

During the course of the project, I documented the first 100, then 450, and finally the final hang of 1000 pillowcases which you see below.


The video below documents the first 100. If you would like to take a look at the other videos I did, you can see them HERE.



This is not just a trip down memory lane, but an opportunity. Olfa is sponsoring a summer challenge, pillowcases for the American Patchwork & Quilting 1 Million Pillowcase Challenge...

AND THERE ARE PRIZES!!!! 


The challenge is to create as many pillowcases as you would like. Each pillowcase will be donated to either the Ronald McDonald House, or Ryan's Case For Smiles. 

The pillowcases must be made from 100% cotton, and you must use the guidelines posted HERE.

Nine winners will be chosen randomly. The grand prize winner will be the one who submits the most pillowcases. Crank up those sewing machines!!!

All entries must be postmarked by August 31, 2018 to be entered in the drawing. You can find all of the information HERE on the Olfa blog.

What a fun and lovely way to use up some of your cotton scraps :)

Good Luck!
I hope you win!!! But then, we always win when we reach out to others.
 Rhonda



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Sunday, July 8, 2018

Sunday Night Reflections




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Sunday's Salad/Ancient Grain Power Salad

It has been an interesting week, and I have missed checking in with you :(

You'll never guess what I will be doing bright and early tomorrow morning...I'm taking a hot air balloon ride!!!!!! I'm so excited :)))) 
Since this is the summer of the bucket list, the opportunity came up and I decided not to let it pass me by. I will take lots and lots of pictures, and share them on Tuesday.   

I was once asked what my favorite meal of the day is. Hands down, my favorite meal is lunch. When I was in school, I always ate breakfast before leaving home, but by 10:30 in the morning, my stomach would start to growl. Lunch could not come soon enough. Sometimes I was lucky enough to have a thermos of hot soup and a piece of cornbread in my lunchbox. That first bite was always just the best! All these years later, I still begin to get hungry around 10:30 in the morning, and the first bite of my lunch is still...just the best!

Along with soup, I love sandwiches and salads. At some point, I'll share some of my sandwich concoctions. They're pretty good if I say so myself ;) But today, I want to share a wonderful salad I made this past week. The grain is quinoa, love quinoa! The other ingredients consist of garbanzo beans, feta cheese, radishes, and arugula.   


Here's what really makes it special, the dressing. Fresh lemon juice is mixed with olive oil, oregano, and chopped kalamata olives. All of the ingredients are blended resulting in a lovely, earthy red dressing.


I placed a big scoop of the quinoa mixture on a bed of mixed greens.


Then drizzled the dressing over the salad. Delicious!!!


The quinoa salad mixture will last for a few days in the refrigerator, so great for repeated lunches.

Ancient Grain Power Salad
downloadable recipe

Ingredients

For the salad;
2 cups cooked quinoa
1 1/2 cups canned garbanzo beans rinsed
1 cup slightly chopped arugala
1/2 cup chopped red radishes
1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
Mixed greens of your choice for serving

For the salad dressing;
6 tablespoons fresh squeezed lemon juice
6 tablespoons olive oil
6 tablespoons chopped kalamata olives(pits removed of course)
2 teaspoons dried oregano
salt and black pepper to taste

For the salad;
Cook quinoa according to package directions. Allow to cool. Add the remainder of the ingredients, except for the mixed greens. Mix well and set aside.

For the salad dressing;
Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Adjust salt a black pepper to taste. 

To serve;
Place mixed greens on a plate. Place a large scoop of the quinoa mixture in the middle of the greens. Drizzle dressing over the quinoa and greens. Serve and enjoy! 

 The salad dressing will keep for at least a week in the refrigerator, so it can be enjoyed on other salads of your choice.

Wishing you many happy lunches!
Rhonda



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Monday, July 2, 2018

Monday Morning Inspiration/Perspective


A little something different this Monday morning, a sweet video that beautifully depicts a change of heart. It also shows how when we give, we will never be without. Four small minutes that may be the perfect beginning to your week :)







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Sunday, July 1, 2018

Sunday Night Reflections




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Sunday's Soup/Summer Roasted Corn Chowder

What says summer more than roasted corn on the grill?!! Well, there are a lot of things, but I really do enjoy roasting fresh corn on the grill. Add some roasted corn to soup, and I am all in :)

Now, I also enjoy a bit of spice. I especially enjoy poblano peppers as they have a bit of spice without actually being hot.

To begin, I take 2 poblano peppers, and 6 ears of corn. Roast the peppers until the outside skin is charred. Place in a plastic bag and allow to steam for about 15 minutes. Remove the charred skin as well as the stem and seeds. Set aside.

Roast the corn until it is toasty brown, being careful not to let it burn. 


Once the corn has browned, allow it to cool, and then cut the kernels from the husk. Divide the corn in half. Place half in a food processor along with the poblano peppers. Puree the mixture. Set aside.

In a large soup pot, melt 2 tablespoons of butter with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Saute 1 medium red onion with 2 stalks of chopped celery until tender. 


Add 2 medium chopped white potatoes, reserved corn, and 2 cups of vegetable broth to the onion/celery mixture. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender.

Add pureed corn/pepper mixture, and 2 cups of buttermilk. Heat until hot, but not boiling. Add more buttermilk to obtain the consistency of soup that you would like.  
  

Ladle into bowls. Top with grated Parmesan cheese, and fresh snipped chives. Serve with some freshly made cornbread, and you will have a feast!



Roasted Corn Chowder
serves 6
downloadable recipe

ingredients
6 ears of fresh corn on the cob
2 poblano peppers
1 medium red onion chopped
2 stalks celery chopped
2 medium white potatoes chopped
2 cups vegetable broth
2 cups buttermilk
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and black pepper to taste
fresh grated Parmesan and snipped chives for serving

Roast poblano peppers and corn on the grill. Roast peppers until skin is charred. Place charred peppers in a plastic bag and allow to stem for approximately 15 minutes. Remove charred skin, stems, and seeds. set aside.

Roast corn until browned on all sides. Allow to cool, and then cut corn from husks. Place half of the corn, along with the peppers in a food processor. Blend until smooth. Set aside.

Heat butter and olive oil i  a large soup pot. Add red onions and celery. Saute until tender. Add potatoes, unprocessed corn, and vegetable broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender. Add pureed corn mixture and buttermilk. Heat until warmed through. Do not allow the soup to boil. Add more buttermilk if soup is a little too thick.

Add salt and black pepper to taste.

Ladle into bowls. Top with shredded Parmesan cheese and snipped fresh chives.  

If by chance you are having a cookout, plan to cook a little extra corn and the peppers. They will last a couple of days in the refrigerator until you are ready to make the soup.
Enjoy!
Rhonda



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Thursday, June 28, 2018

Thrifty Thursday/Free Raglan Tee

A nice easy tee that can be made out of a woven fabric...sounds like a great idea to me!

A few weeks back, Fabric-Store.com posted the raglan tee below. It's a nice clean design, so I thought I would give it a try.


I had just a couple of issues with the pattern. There are no sizes marked, and there are no notches, which can be confusing when it comes to attaching the sleeve to the front and back. Prior to cutting, I put my own notches on the raglan seams to mark front and back. Easy enough to do. As for the sizing, just measure across the lower portion of the pattern and then decide based on your hip measurement which line to cut on. 

One other issue is that in the instructions, there is no seam allowance specified. I used 5/8". Other than those 3 issues, the pattern went together easily.
  

I decided to give it a whirl with some fabric that I found as I was cleaning up the studio, a calico print that I had completely forgotten about. Thought it would make a nice pair of summer pajamas.

The instructions call for 2 small tucks on either side of center in the front and back. When I made up the tee, the tucks were not needed. Look closely at the picture below and you can see that a small dart is needed on the shoulder.


Once the dart was added on the shoulder, the garment laid flat and there was no need for front and back tucks.


My finished pajamas. I had to cut the tee with a seam down the center of the back and front. I had the crocheted trim, so I threaded a piece of ribbon through, sewed it down the center and covered up the center front seam. I had another piece of crocheted trim that I added to the sleeves and the hem of the pants. The center picture on the right below shows how I mark the back of my pants. Great use of bits of ribbon.

And me in the pajamas :)


I had a small piece of silk that was just enough for another top. This time I had enough to do the cuffs. 


I once again added a dart on the shoulder.


I really like how the top wears, so I decided to lengthen it and make a t-shirt dress.


With this fabric, I did not need to add the shoulder darts as the neckline laid flat without them. 


I added a shirt tail hem. To finish the hem, I cut a 2" wide piece of bias. I made the back a little longer than the front.  


And finally, I added a small front pocket. It looks so cute on. I'll post pictures of me in the dress soon.


The pajama pants as well as the striped pants are from a free pattern, the Martha Stewart pajama pant that I posted HERE. I find the pattern to be a great basic elastic waist pant. 

You can find the Raglan Tee pattern HERE

Happy Sewing!
Rhonda



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